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tv   [untitled]    September 25, 2010 2:00pm-2:30pm PST

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we are working on developing what that plan might look like, but as i mentioned earlier there are some major pieces we have not even had any understanding of, not least of which is one of the philosophical points that we alluded to. this is based on instruction having to do with our special education program. we have not had the report presented to us, with the recommendations in the report. we have not had the opportunity to engage the community and our own staff with those recommendations yet. that is one example of major pieces of information we do not yet possess and that we feel are critically important to be able to determine what the process is going to look like. i do not want to sound ambiguous, it is our goal to take that information, to engage the community, and then develop
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what that time when would look like. i think what is very germane is what superintendent garcia has shared, which is that it must be based on the instructional program rather than the drawing of boundaries. vice president mendoza: how does that look with the schools that have sig, when you want to have community input on the family's fed into those schools? >> those are all interrelated. i believe i used the word braiding. . i am going to use the special education recommendations. the recommendations we are anticipating from our special education audit are going to be extensive and far reaching in every school. you are going to take those recommendations along with the process of each of the school
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improvement grants to determine what the reform will look like in the schools. will it look like a different instructional focus, a longer day? will the after-school look like? -- what will the after-school look like? some of our schools are magnet schools. how do you implement and develop a magnet strand along with the special education redesign and possible language pathways? we really do not even know what is on the table yet. they are all interconnected.
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vice president mendoza: remember that some of these program developments may affect capacity. we are presuming schools and programs. commissioner norton: on hoover, for example, where we are going to save the spanish immersion program -- is that back on the table? are those kind of decisions going to be definite that we are phasing that out? are we going to start by not accepting any more sixth graders the coming year, or will we accept sixth graders next year with the new temporary plan? >> my understanding is we are not expecting any change at the middle school level of peter pattern. -- the middle school level feeder pattern. [applause]
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>> i do want to remind everyone that one of the reasons -- i heard what commissioner norton said it and do not necessarily agree or disagree. but the fact of the matter is that whether we like this process or not, this process is very helpful for us because it opens up a huge dialogue. we have been talking about the assignment process for over two years in this district. the rubber met the road to have genuine, great discussions that needed to take place. it was just the last couple of months, the best discussions we have had. i do not see that as something -- i thought that was a good thing for us to do. we said to the community that we would throw out something. we could all be talking philosophically about what it ought to look like, but the reality is until you have
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something to shoot darts at you do not know what to aim at. we give everybody something to aim at. we did that intentionally so we could come up with something better. thank you. commissioner wynns: any other comments or clarifying questions? we are going to try to do one minute and not say the things you said before. >> i am a parent in sunset. i am not in favor of the substitute motion, but in favor of the current program and would like it implemented immediately and so our fifth graders can't benefit from it. [applause] -- so our fifth graders can ben efit from it. i have 245 signatures in favor of the current feeder pattern.
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the mistake you might make is you are listening to the minority and putting them about the wishes of the majority, who are silent. there are people in the communities that are happy with this program. >> there are children in here. i think we ought to model what we expect them to be. [applause] >> anyway, i think you are doing a fabulous job. i know it is a lot of hard work. let us do it now. if we do not do it now, we will be in the same position next year that we are in next year. we can implement it now and fine-tune it along the way. thank you. [applause] >> as a fifth grade parent, distillate to feeder patterns
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directly affect me. -- this delay to feeder patterns directly affect me. it is not just about my kid. it is about the whole district. [applause] commissioner wynns: i appreciate everybody's enthusiasm, but we are having a lot of trouble hearing.
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a lot of families have more than one kid. if we cannot go to our neighborhood schools, we are going to move out of san francisco. >> my name is susie. i am a parent on the west side. i have three kids in san francisco. i implore the feeder -- i am for the feeder pattern. if they move in clusters, they have their friends. they have the security of the community. i am sure you spend a lot of money and time on the study. they can be so isolated.
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if my kid does not go to the school in the presidio, where will you send my kid? across town? some kids do not have the luxury of a car. that does not make any sense. i am for the feeder pattern. think you for your time. >> my name is michael wong. i am a parent at francis scott key. i would like to echo some statements that i would like the feeder pattern to remain as it is. i think we are in danger of postponing the system. i appreciate all the work you have done to study the proposal. i think it is something that really makes sense and should be implemented. thank you.
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>> my name is david robinson. i am a parent. our school community prepared a statement in which we request a pause in the implementation of the middle school feeder program, specifically to deal with spinach capacity -- spahish nish capacity and also the issue of choice. we have, since the release of the draft map, opened the conversation with all of the spanish immersion elementary schools. we continue to work with them and partner with the district to turn this into a very positive experience for the whole district. i personally am always inspired in working on these issues by
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how much we all share a commitment to the values we hold for our kids. [applause] >> [speaking spanish] >> i have two children, one in
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kindergarten and one in fourth grade. i am a little upset about the change. i find unfair you're taking away from our children the learning of languages. the best thing would be to have the program ready and then put our children there. [applause] >> i am a teacher at buena vista. i have heard you say you are taking our opinions. that is great. the only thing is our opinions were not taken into account prior to this. our school does not really fit in. we need to make sure all the schools are equitable. immersion programs are not yet ready. like the parents have said, it takes many years to implement a successful program. when that is done, we can look that different options. at this moment, we are wasting years for kids were there is no
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program available for them. it should be a community thing. there are parents that just learned about this recently. the community that is affected should be involved. i hope that happens from now on. >> good evening. my name is marilyn garcia. i am the spanish teacher at hoover middle school. i know i just sent a letter to the board, to the superintendent, about this recommendation. i just want to reiterate it does take years to develop a quality program. i was a teacher at buena vista up for 14 to 18 years before i moved to hoover to develop it more. this is my seventh year at hoover. i am also part of the school council. last year, we voted as a school to expand the spanish immersion
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program. this year, we have to sixth grade class is -- we have 2 you a sixth grade -- we have two sixth-grade classes. i hope you will keep hoover as a citywide program. my own doctors were graduates of both programs -- whenever it -- my own daughters were graduates of buena vista and hoover. please do not shut it down. >> good evening, members of the board, superintendent's staff, and community. i am a parent at buena vista elementary school. i have a couple of concerns. i am really happy that you have reconsidered pushing the proposal forward and are taking time to work with the community
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and incorporate input. i am glad to hear tonight that you all are willing to engage the community. i consider myself an active parent at my school and i still just learned about this very recently. i do not know that my community had enough time to provide input for what we would like to see. we do have a serious concern about not having a middle school with an immersion program being available for our sixth grader when he goes off to middle school. that was part of the original proposal. i am not sure it is being addressed. the status quo will stand for next year, but i am not sure what it means for my child. research shows -- i am sure you want to follow the evidence- based best practices. research shows that any language immersion program is more successful if the entire school is language immersion, not just
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one program within a mono- lingual school. and we want you to consider that and make sure it is available for all students in language immersion. it is unfortunate to see the fear folks have about sending their children to the east side. and the fear of east side folks keeping their children on the east side. hopefully, we can work for equity for all. help us do that, particularly by keeping in mind what you do with your plan. [applause] >> [speaking spanish]
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>> good evening. i am a mother and a representative of monroe elementary. we are concerned about the immersion. we want you to analyze and see it could affect us the fleet if that program is not implemented correctly. >> [speaking spanish]
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[applause] >> good evening. my name is from a cup. i have two children at monroe. five years is not enough, if after that you are not going to keep up with the program and everything is going to go to waste. it is not fair that she is
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doing english and spanish exams. for what? that effort is not going to be taken into account if you take away the immersion programs at the middle schools. >> [speaking spanish]
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>> i have children in monroe. i represent many voices. we had a meeting on friday. we do not want to get our kids into a one-year immersion.
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that is not strong enough. it is mainly a spanish class. also, the security on the neighborhood -- some of the schools where kids would be sent, we have seen children get out of the school and start taking drugs in the alley. you hour -- you are sending our children to what we say in spanish, "the mouth of the wolf ." think of those kids. do not let those kids become delinquent. we care about children. i ask god to give you the wisdom to not make a halfway solution. commissioner wynns: we are going to cut off testimony on this item in 10 minutes, so maybe 10 more speakers on this. if other people have come from your school, remember we have to discuss this recommendation and the committee has to take
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action. we also have a whole other area of discussion and presentations. if other people have come from your school and want to express the same opinion, the best thing would be to say, "i agree with that. good night." somebody is blocked in in the parking lot, a great bmw -- gray bmx x5. if that is your car, please move it. somebody is blocked. >> i am at fsk right now. if this feeder program is not implemented and i have one kid who is going a half-hour drive, i am not going to be part of the
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community at either school, because i will be on the road more often than not, just driving. i implore you guys to do something so we can get in our neighborhood schools. if there is not an immersion program now, put it in. you have to do something so i am not sitting on the road all day to drop off my kids. my wife and i work. we cannot afford to not have both of them in the same area. [applause] commissioner wynns: ms. o'keefe, could you tell us how many people currently get one of their choices in the middle school process? the interim process we are proposing is likely to have the same kinds of results we have today. >> historically, for the last
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eight years, 90% of middle school students get one of their choices. >> i am the executive director of parents for public schools. i talked to almost 1000 parents. most were parents the district has the hardest time reaching. we heard the same things then as we heard this last month. parents are clamoring for quality schools. second, parents want to make informed choices, whether it is choosing their school or lending their voice to a conversation about student assignments. since the message is the same to
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us, we want to repeat the message we gave to you in the spring. we want the district to start to give the discussion about quality schools the same visibility, urgency, and consistent attention as we have been giving student assignment. we call on the board and district to engage the community around a plan for creating quality schools. we are still too -- we are here to help facilitate that. in doing so, we want to say thank you for recommending to delay the middle school feeder, and want to urge you to set a time line and measurable benchmarks for each school and each of the programs identified tonight by the deputy superintendent, and to make concrete data available for the public to review and discuss, and make space for families to discuss priorities in middle schools. i want to mention that besides bringing the conversation toward quality schools and
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programming, we also urge you to consider taking longer than a year if the conversation needs to take longer than a year. >> [speaking a foreign language]
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